By Chad Ingram
Published Sept. 14 2016
Most visitors to the HaliburtonHighlands are middle-aged early results from a county tourismdepartment survey show.
As of the end of August 153 people hadfilled out the survey what tourism director Amanda Virtanen called a“very small sample” as she presented findings to members of thecounty's tourism advisory committee during a Sept. 14 meeting.
So far the survey has been promotedstrictly online but the county has printed promotional material thatwill be distributed at restaurants accommodations other businessesand through media.
“We have these print promotions thatwill be in the market next week” Virtanen said.
The survey will continue throughout2017.
Based on the first round of responses60 per cent of visitors were between the ages of 45 and 65 with 26per cent of respondents aged 45 to 54 and 34 per cent aged 55 to 65.
A little more than 11 per cent ofrespondents identified themselves as being between 25 and 34 21 percent between 35 and 44 and 7.5 per cent of respondents were olderthan 65.
Forty-six per cent of respondents had ahousehold income of $100000 or more. Forty-five per cent identifiedthemselves as being at the “family stage” of life 26 per cent ascouples with no kids and nearly 23 per cent as empty nesters.
"We really kind of wanted that mix" Virtanen said.
About half said they'd heard about theHaliburton Highlands through friends or family and many stay ateither their own cottages or cottages of friends and family while inthe county.
Fifty per cent enter the county thoughMinden via Highway 35 with about 15 per cent coming on Highway 118east through Carnarvon and 15 per cent on County Road 503.
Eighty per cent of respondents staymore than five days when they come to the community with nearly 27per cent spending more than $2000 during that time.